LtCol Benjamin Fiala was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico on 23 July 1977. Raised as a Colorado native in Durango, Colorado by James and Marilyn Fiala; he graduated from the University of Colorado, Boulder in 2000 - Finance and Accounting. He played professional golf, worked as an accountant and traveled before joining the Marine Corps as a Second Lieutenant in 2003.
Post commissioning, LtCol Fiala attended The Basic School in Quantico, VA (2003); designated a Naval Flight Officer from VT-86 (2005), Pensacola, FL; and joined VMFAT-101 as a student aboard MCAS Miramar, CA (2006).
With his first fleet squadron, VMFA(AW)-121 (2006-2009), LtCol Fiala deployed to Iraq in support of OIF 06-08. He then transferred to 2nd Battalion, 7th Marines (2009-2010) to serve as a Forward Air Controller. During this tour, he deployed with the 31st MEU, Spring Patrol. LtCol Fiala returned to VMFA(AW)-121 (2010-2012) and attened WTI 12-1 (TACAIR). During this tour, LtCol Fiala served as the Training Officer for VMFA(AW)-121 and deployed to Iwakuni, Japan in support of the Unit Deployment Program.
In October 2013, LtCol Fiala executed orders to 5th Marine Regiment serving as the Air Officer. While at 5th Marines, LtCol Fiala coordinated, designed, and reintroduced the Marine Corps Combat Readiness Exercise (MCCRE) for the regiment and was a lead planner for the stand-up of SPMAGTF-CR-CENT.
LtCol Fiala moved to Iwakuni, Japan in July 2014 and successfully completed dual-department head tours as the Operations Officer and AMO for VMFA(AW)-242. In May 2016, LtCol Fiala received orders to HQMC Aviaiton, APP-33, Training and Readiness. In 2019, LtCol Fiala departed the Pentagon to serve as the Executive Officer, MAG-31.
LtCol Fiala attended: Cornerston, Aviation Safety Command Course, Weapons and Tactics Instructor (WTI) course - TACAIR and Air Officer Department (AOD), TACP School, SERE School, Aviation Maintenance School, Aviation Quality Assurance Course, and Ground Safety.
LtCol Fiala’s qualifications include WTI TACAIR, WTI AOD, Mission Commander, FAC(A)I, TAC(A)I, and Night Systems Instructor. He completed Command & Staff (non-resident), Expeditionary Warfare School (non-resident) and serves as a non-resident instructor.
LtCol Fiala was married to Kara M. Fiala on 9 October 2015 and they have three daughters: Olivia (4), Arianna (3) and Elaina (1).